Tuesday, 2 February 2016

2016 x 33/365

(cont from here)

LAST INSTALLMENT OF VIRGIN TAIWAN TRIP!
Will be covering Lushan (廬山) & Kaohsiung (高雄) which were our last two stops before we departed for the sunny island. 

Lushan was initially not in our itinerary or visit list because one of my mom's friends mentioned that it was boring and not worth to visit. However, we decided to go ahead because our driver recommended it + we have not been there so why not? :) 
Prove to be a right decision! 

Our route was Cingjing farm > Lushan which was 2-3 hours if I don't recall wrongly.
Hence, we reached there at night time and a mini van from our hotel (Zheng Yang Hotel; 正楊大饭店) came to pick us up because it was a steep slope up and we didn't want to walk ;)

To my shock, there were A LOT of guests at the lobby (and elderly in particular). 
The entire place was in a state of chaos and there was only one receptionist tending to the guests which actually made things worst. We checked in AFTER we finally got her attention and had to walk to the building beside to get to our room. 

The room was a disappointment. I believe it was catered more to the elderly group hence it was kind of "old fashioned" which was fine with me BUT my brother saw a roach scurry past the beds. That was absolutely unacceptable because it concerned with hygiene purpose. Besides that, the bathroom was horrible. The flush couldn't really work well & floor/sink were not exactly clean. The extra set of mattress and blanket looked so dirty and probably infested with bed bugs? It's my assumption of course.

 Had second thoughts of staying but it was only for a night so... sucked it up. Would NOT recommend this hotel UNLESS you are on a budget. 

NT2800 (=SGD120) for family room of 4 + 1 extra set

It's probably the most affordable hotel in Lushan with hot spring bath. Oops, verbal vomit. Pictures time!







The only comfort was this view. Could spot the hot spring bath from our room and we couldn't wait to soak + our driver suggested that we do so before it got crowded. So we quickly got change and went down! 

Tip 101: Bring swimsuit (other clothes strictly not allowed) 

There will be an attendant there to check and pass you the shower cap & hair ties (for ladies with long hair) 

Thankfully we heed his advice. It got really crowded after we had the entire bath to ourselves for a while. Honestly, despite the disappointing room, we thoroughly enjoyed the hot spring! It's the BEST thing to do in such a chilly weather. 



The hotel's restaurant where we had our breakfast the next day. 


Roaming around the streets to look for places to have dinner and we wanted to have steamboat since there were a lot of steamboat restaurants there


Settled down at this restaurant near the hotel and THE SERVICE WAS HORRIBLE.
Couldn't bother snapping any photos because I was so angsty. 
She (I assumed the lady boss) is probably the most rude person in Taiwan, given that Taiwanese are known for being friendly and nice.



The breakfast food was pretty acceptable. I don't have very high standards for hotel breakfast as long as it doesn't look pathetic (like the one I had in BKK Grand Alphine) and of course it had to taste decent. Though mom commented that the food seemed to be for charitable purposes, I found it to be decent. :) 

BUT i hate it because we had to clear the used utensils and cutleries ourselves, wtf. 


Went to roam the other side of Lushan after breakfast.

















After exploring for an hour, we realized that there were a few other nicer hotels (more expensive of course) with hot spring bath as well. Wtf. Should have done more research instead of just listening to our driver blindly. I highly suspect our driver had a complimentary night there though. Or cheaper rates. 




Had another round of soaking before we checked out and headed to KS.





Goodbye 廬山, you're not dull definitely, so I'll be back to explore more of you x 

En route to KS and besides the usual rest stop, we popped by Fo Guang Shan (高雄佛光山)
According to our driver, it will take 2h to explore the entire place but we took less than an hour 
because it was closed HAHA.








After the temple, we headed to our hotel - Kindness Hotel (Liuheyeshi)


PS/ It's our most favorite hotel out of all - good location, affordable price, nice room, COMPLIMENTARY TEA SNACKS FROM 5PM-11PM hahaha




康桥商旅 - 六合夜市南华馆



Oh oops, I missed out complimentary bikes too, which we used to explore the vicinity at night.



Family room for 6 > NT3600 (=SGD156) including breakfast. 




Finally don't have to stand in the bathtub to shower. 
And they have separate bath soap and shampoo for females and males.
And and they have massage shower head too.
Thoughtful!




Dining area. 

After we washed up, we went down for the complimentary snacks (haha Singaporeans). We expected some biscuits and drinks BUT realized it's like a buffet :D 










So all these would be complimentary and free flow from 5pm till 11pm which means... no need to spend on dinner and supper HAHAHAHA. KS would be 'cheap' if you chose to stay in Kindness. Complimentary breakfast > cheap lunch ( or maybe skip if too full ) > dinner and supper treat at Kindness, how awesome

After we were done with our free dinner, we went out to explore!





六合夜市 (Liouhe Night Market) - walking distance from the hotel






As we pretty full from our dinner (haha), we decided to head to another night market (Kaisyuan Night Market, 凱旋夜市) to fully utilize our time since we only had less than a day in KS




Unfortunately, Kaisyuan was closed for the night and Jin Zhuan Night Market (金鑽夜市) which was right beside Kaisyuan was closed for renovation. :( 
So we kind of made a wasted trip but we had fun strolling in the cold. 

On a side note, KS is like a ghost town. I'm not sure if it's the district we visited. 
However, in general, I don't see it as lively as places like XMD. 
It's definitely a beautiful city and it's a pity that we didn't have enough time to explore more especially Ruifeng night market (瑞豐夜市) :(


We went back to Liouhe to grab some food and won all these craftoholics at this random game stall. Cost us 20ish bucks for 6 of that. Called it a night after cycling and it felt so good to just lie on the fluffy queen bed :)

Oh and did i mention Kindness also provides complimentary laundry self-service?
They have washing machines and dryers right beside their dining area. Out of curiosity, we went to try it after our visit to the night market. Works well haha so we washed 6 days of dirty and worn clothes ;)





Off to Dream Mall (夢時代購物中心) after breakfast.





Complimentary shuttle bus (免費接駁車) outside Kaisyuan Metro Station (凱旋站)


Went for the popular ferris wheel when we reached. 

First impression of Dream Mall - ghost mall HAHA there were less than 10 shoppers if i were to count. I don't know if it was too early or something






When you're too cheapskate to get expensive printed photos, you try to sneak a photo HAHA





Lunch at Dream Mall's atas food court. 
My pasta sucks big time and I had to ditch it after a few mouthfuls, :(





Had some time after Dream Mall so we decided to pop by 86shop (86小舖 - my third and last visit) at XinXing District. Nearest metro is Zhong Yang Garden Station (中央公园)
Had difficult locating the shop but thankful for GPS (:




Time to head back to check out and leave for the airport :(



Delayed because the plane arrived late. Ok.. I guess it isn't unusual for Scoot


“Nobody can discover the world for somebody else. Only when we discover it for ourselves does it become common ground and a common bond and we cease to be alone.” – Wendell Berry

Goodbye +886, for now. 
Honestly, I feel that you're too overrated. When I listen to my parents' raving about you, when i read travelogues, all those praises and compliments really raise my expectations but you disappoint most of the times. I didn't like any night markets in particular nor popular food like 大腸包小腸 nor tourist places like Shifen Old Street but one thing for sure, you're a beautiful city with nice scenery and I do love your unlimited beef cubes along the street plus the chilly weather so..

Will be back to admire your beauty soon x 




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